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captain jim

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Hi All

This is my first large MV restoration, so a lot of new skills have been learned so far and i can now appreciate how different it is to working on some thing smaller, i have always loved the GMC trucks and Shop Vans in particular and when, after sending out a few feelers one became available there was no question i had to take te challenge, and have never looked back!

I initialy purchased the truck a nearly a year ago i have only just got around to posting the progress (still ongoing) in the mean time i hvae found out some info on the truck such as that its Ex Norwegian and still had its release docs in the glove box! i have also managed to uncove hood numbers and the chassis number which has enabled me to confirm the Identity of the truck and that it is an original Shop van and not a conversion, there are a number of non original parts on the truck such as the fuel tank etc which i have manage to source and replace thanks to an eye opening trip to the netherlands!


one happy new owner!



stripping down proved easier that first thought!



rear being removed for restoration later:cool2:



managed to get hold of another rocker cover and dont cringe but........ got it chrome plated !

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Thanks for the positive replies guys I will keep you all updated as the project continues and don't worry the chrome plated cover won't be on the finished truck I have the original all sprayed up in od ready to be fitted (corner of original cover seen in bottom of chrome pic) the chrome one was a spare that I got done through work as a bit of a bet! and will look great on the mantle piece!!!

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Very nice standard of work indeed and if those ancillary units are anything to go by, I can see this is going to be one impressive wagon when its finished.


Just to keep your motivation up, here is a few photo's of the restoration of my Shop Van, which is now more or less finished. I can't brag the credit for the restoration work however; I just fund it and do much of the fetching and carrying and sourcing of materials. I did use to do assisted GMC restorations when I was much younger - Had my first CCKW at 18 and bought it in many pieces..............but a young family, house projects, no facilities at home and running my own business all mean that its not currently viable to undertake such work - So I leave it to the experts who are more capable and more geared-up!


Adrian Barrell of R H Barrell Engineering provided the specialist metal work requirements and Howard Wade of Rusty-Bits did the rest. I purchased this truck from an old pal, (known on HMVF as 'Shop Nut), and he had done much work on it beforehand. Being a fussy bugger (thankfully), the truck was an exceptionally original and sound example and as can be determined by the chassis number, this truck was a Shop van from birth. When Robert bought it however, it was fitted with a hard cab, which was incorrect for the chassis number batch, so Robert swapped the cab for probably the most original open cab example I have ever seen. The trucks correct designation is M30 Signal Corps Repair, but as you will know, they were produced in many different Shop Van body classifications.


I've just got to make my mind up on which marking to apply now. Would be great to get them both together upon completion of yours - Where about's are you based?
















PS - I hope you don't think I'm hijacking the superb restoration thread of your own CCKW Shop Van, it just seemed appropriate to show a similar vehicle which has had similar work carried out, albeit a little further advanced. I will watch this thread with interest.

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Thats a nice looking project you have there I shall be watching this thread with interest, I have another one of these trucks that will be having a chassis up rebuild, although this one was not an original shopvan, I shall post some pics once I get started on it. Just waiting for power to be connected to my new property.Keep up the good work. Oh nice pics Clive.


Regards Howard.

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Oh er Missus ...I'm in a similar situation with mine ..front end steering Needs re building and the workshop needs re skinning


My truck had been gutted so I'm converting her into a camper ...to old to do camping.:cool2:


have you posted your truck info on Vultures GMC Blog ??? ( look in the American Vehicle section )..



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I remember when I bought my Dodge WC51 in Kongsberg, Norway, in April 1994, for 300£ (!). They had rows of GMC's for sale at the same auction, and the Shop Van ones were at the bottom of the list and sold for around 80£ each.....


Those were the days. Wish I had bought a bunch and parked them in a shed for future use...


Goran N

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Thanks for all the great comments! thanks to Asbjorn for helping translate the Norwegian writing on the starter motor, i had played with the idea of removing the post war rebuild plates and going back to war time spec, however i have come to the conclusion that these plates are just as important to be kept as part of the history of the truck as the original ones are, because if the Norwegian army had not used this vehicle and maintained and rebuilt it to a high standard then it would not have survived.

Clive im based in Oxfordshire near Bicester if that helps, your truck looks fantastic! im in a similar situation where the rear needs reskinning and unfortunately has suffered from the metal moth internaly as i have found the problem with these rear bodies is they tend to rot from the inside out, being insulated with fibreglass which acts like a sponge when wet, its nice to see an original interior as complete as thatmakes such a difference! unfortunately this one was stripped ou but i have a plan for it which will become clear once the chassis and cab has been restored thanks for posting the pics of your truck i hope to be at that stage early next year (work dependent)

Howard i loo kforward to seeing your truck and progress it seems there are more shop vans about than i thought.



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Great looking truck Jim and I'm really impressed with the progress you made.


I'm want to respray mine but have never undertaken any restoration work before so its still in the research phase. I dread to think what the rust situation (if any) is on the inside of my shopbody.


Anyway, although you said the rear was empty, I don't suppose you've got the evanair heater thingy on the front wall?


I'm in saffron walden (Essex) with a closed cab shopvan like yours. Look forward to seeing your progress



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Hi Jon unfortnately my truck doesnt have the evanair heater any more as literaly every thing has been stripped out previous to me purchasing, all that remains are the blinds and light fixings, however i have discovered upon removing the lovely (horrible) lino covered floor that there is a sturdy looking replacement floor in there (pics to follow).

would you be interested in posting some pics of your truck on this thread as i find when restoring a vehicle its great to see others vehicles to help with details and what i am missing and to gather info on different variants! also im trying to compile a load of info on this variant as there seems to be a little about the shop vans other than that i have found in the manuals and various sites that have similar info on them,

i havent posted on vultures blog but its on my to do list!


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I know what you mean regarding lack of info on shop vans, my ears always prick up when I find reference to a new one on the web. Vulture's blog has gone some way to addressing this.


Sure, more than happy to post pictures of the truck.


There is a good external photo on Ken's flickr page (Ken - hope you don't mind me linking):


WW2 GMC 353 workshop truck


Here's a few internal shots:






And the elusive evanair heater - hence my question:





If there is anything specific you want a close photo of, just ask, otherwise I'll dribble various pics on here.


Look forward to seeing the picture of the floor - do you have metal or wooden battery box covers? Ours has wooden.


I'm missing a internal light cover so if you ever get wind of any...



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Jon.... That's what the Flickr site is all about .. Vultures (Ian) site is a great boon to the workshop truck owner so please


post your info and pix ..C.J. ...Captain jim PM received ...


Jon ....will jump onto my Jimmy 1st jan as my MGA sports car is all but finished..Just sorted out a new inner windscreen ;)


and will hit REX with a big list of bits ...££££££ ouch .. Want to have her finished for Damyns hall as its a 3 day show this


and last year they had cheep beer on the Sunday night ......so that makes it a 4 night event ..:D


are you guys hitting Stonleigh ????




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